Thursday, April 19, 2007
SPRING HAS SPRUNG ON DENMAN ISLAND-- PASTA ALA PRIMAVERA
Brian standing in front of an old blossoming tree at Filongley Park, which used to be a homestead, on Denman
VANCOUVER ISLANDERS: I will be appearing, along with more great vegan chefs at the Vancouver Island Vegetarian Association's (VIVA) Earth Day event this Saturday, April 21st, in Victoria, BC. I will be doing breakfast foods! More info here.
PORTLAND VEGFEST: I will be doing a demo at the Portland VegFest with my friend and fellow chef/teacher/author, Julie Hasson, on May 12th. Lots of great speakers, including, T. Colin Campbell and John Robbins! Get the details here.
Daffodils and blossoms have been out for a few weeks here now and, even though the temperature is a bit lower than normal, the sun is gaining strength. We've been hearing frogs for ages now, and dandelions are showing up, people are planting peas, there are worms all over the road in the mornings, among other signs of spring.
I'm sorry I haven't blogged much lately-- I have another workshop coming up, I'm late finishing the newsletter (sorry, guys!), and it's getting hard to keep up with emails and questions. The house is a mess and I've neglected my dancing and exercise. And I don't even have the excuse of being a gardener, or having little kids at home! Sheesh-- I'm slipping!
Oh, well...I thought you might enjoy this favorite quick spring meal of ours. I have versions in several of my books-- this is the one I use most now. It's kind of a compilation. I really like using the roasted vegetables in it. They taste great and they cook quickly without you having to watch them the whole time.
The pasta in this photo is fettucine-- But use wholewheat pasta for WW Core plan.
BRYANNA’S LOW-FAT VEGAN PASTA ALA PRIMAVERA (WW CORE PLAN COMPATIBLE)
This version is gorgeously creamy, but almost fat-free. You can substitute any other vegetables that seem appropriate, or that proliferate in your garden or produce store. This is good enough for company!
TO MAKE SOY-FREE, substitute 2 c. of the Quick Creamy Sauce (Soy-Free Version) for the blended tofu mixture AND the broth. (see Recipe below) Use Parma for the topping.
1 lb. dry egg-free fettucine "nests", or linguine, spaghetti or other favorite pasta, wholewheat
1 medium onion, sliced
2 large cloves of garlic, chopped
1 lb. thin asparagus, trimmed and cut diagonally into slices
1/2 lb. button or crimini mushrooms, sliced
2 small zucchini or other summer squash, cut into 1/4" rounds
1 small carrot, peeled, halved lengthwise and sliced diagonally 1/8th" thick (or use about 4 sliced baby carrots)
OR 1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, seeded and sliced
6 oz cauliflower, cut into small slices
1 c. baby peas OR 2 c. edible-pod snap peas, sliced 1" wide
1 T. extra-virgin olive oil
5 green onions, chopped
2 T. fresh basil
1 recipe Tofu Sour Creme (see recipe below)
1/2 c. "chicken-style" vegetarian broth
salt and pepper to taste
soy or nut “parmesan” to pass at the table (Galaxy Foods Vegan Soy Parmesan , or Parma!, [made from walnuts]
Make the Tofu Sour Creme.
Put the pasta on to boil in a large pot of boiling salted water.
Place all of the vegetables except the peas and green onions, in a large, shallow roasting pan and toss with the olive oil. Place the pan 3 or 4" under the broiler of your oven and roast the vegetables until they are slightly charred. Turn them over with a spatula, add the peas and green onions and broil them until they are crisp-tender and have some slightly charred edges. This whole operation should take only about 10 minutes.
Add the basil, Tofu Sour Creme and broth to the vegetables and stir gently. Taste for salt and pepper. When the pasta is al dente, drain it and add it to the sauce. Toss well and serve hot.
Nutrition (per serving, not counting "parmesan"): 354.8 calories; 9% calories from fat; 3.8g total fat; 0.0mg cholesterol; 85.7mg sodium; 818.2mg potassium; 70.9g carbohydrates; 5.3g fiber; 6.6g sugar; 65.6g net carbs; 16.9g protein; 6.6 points.
BRYANNA’S TOFU SOUR CREME (WW CORE PLAN COMPATIBLE)
Makes 1 1/2 cups
Silken tofu makes a smooth, rich-tasting mixture which can be used anywhere you would normally use sour cream, including cooking.
1 (12.3 oz.) boxes extra-firm SILKEN tofu
3 T. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
OPTIONAL: for a richer mixture, add 1-2 T. olive oil
Process in a food processor or blender until VERY smooth. Keep in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Nutrition (per 1/4 cup, without oil): 34.4 calories; 28% calories from fat; 1.1g total fat; 0.0mg cholesterol; 114.1mg sodium; 96.8mg potassium; 2.1g carbohydrates; 0.1g fiber; 1.1g sugar; 2.1g net carbs; 4.2g protein; 0.8 points.
BRYANNA’S QUICK CREAMY SAUCE (FOR PASTA AND OTHER USES)(WW CORE PLAN COMPATIBLE)
Makes about 2 and 1/4 c.
This is one of the most versatile and effortless sauces around, so don't be afraid to make this large amount. It can be used in a number of pasta dishes, and leftovers can be used in creamy soups and casseroles, to moisten stuffed baked potatoes or mashed potatoes, on vegetables..etc..
Combine in a blender:
3/4 c. cold water
6 oz. (1/2 a box) of extra-firm SILKEN tofu
2 T. dry white wine OR 1 1/2 T. water plus 1/2 T. balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
2 3/4 T. nutritional yeast flakes
1 T. cornstarch
3/4 T. "chicken-style" veggie broth powder
1 tsp. salt OR 2 T. light miso plus 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. garlic granules
OPTIONAL: 1 T. tahini
When the mixture is smooth, pour it into a heavy saucepan or a medium microwave-proof bowl. Whisk in:
3/4 c. hot water
Stir constantly over high heat until it comes to a boil. Turn down and simmer for a few minutes, until it thickens.
MICROWAVE OPTION: Pour the blended mixture into a large microwave-safe bowl. Cook, covered, on HI for 2 minutes. Whisk well and cook, covered, on HI for 2 more minutes, or until thickened. Whisk well.
TO MAKE SOY-FREE: Omit water (all 1 1/2 c. in total) and tofu. Instead, use 2 c. almond milk (the commercial type, such as Almond Breeze, is low in fat). Use 1 3/4 T. cornstarch instead of 1 T.. Use the salt, or use chickpea miso.
Nutrition (per 1/4 cup serving, without tahini; basic version): 23.9 calories; 16% calories from fat; 0.5g total fat; 0.0mg cholesterol; 253.4mg sodium; 87.5mg potassium; 2.3g carbohydrates; 0.7g fiber; 0.3g sugar; 1.5g net carbs; 2.7g protein; 0.4 points.